In its drive to prevent and address corruption issues in Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies, the Public Education and Outreach Department of the Anti-Corruption North-West Regional Office has held a sensitization meeting with the National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA) in Port Loko.
According to the Public Education Officer (PEO) Mohamed Thullah, the engagement was conducted to sensitize staff on the general work of the Commission, foster partnership and coalition building and to bring to light key corruption issues that resonate with the operations of the institution. Explaining the three pronged approaches to the fight against graft, PEO Thullahaccentuated NaCSA’s role in delivering social services to deprived and remote communities across the country as well as putting together sustainable development activities aimed at alleviating poverty. He noted that as a service delivery institution, staff members should enhance integrity, transparency and accountability in their operations.
Addressing staff of the institution at the NaCSA conference hall, the Regional Manager Al-Hassan Sesay recognized and acknowledged the importance of NaCSA in providing social services that promote community-based demand-driven and sustainable development programmes across the country. In providing these services, he said, corruption has been a major obstacle to fully actualize this avowed objective and noted the importance to engage staff on various forms of corruption and other malfeasance relating to their operations. He pointed out the significance of upholding integrity in public life and be mindful of their interaction with the public.
He informed them that anyone working for NaCSA is a public officer and by extension are covered by the ACC laws. He urged them to be mindful of whatever they do whilst performing their and conform to best practices and procedures in the conduct of their roles and functions. Manager Sesay explained key highlights of the 2019 Amendment Act including but not limited to trial in absentia, restitution, fines, increased in jail term and fines, cancellation of contracts, narrowed asset declaration, examination malpractice and impersonating an ACC official.
Explaining key corruption offences, the regional head provided a concise elucidation of related corruption offences including corrupt acquisition of wealth, possession of unexplained wealth, abuse of office and position, offering, soliciting and accepting advantage, misappropriation of public and donor funds, using influence for contract, protection of public property and revenue etc.
Earlier in his welcome statement, the Regional Coordinator for NaCSA Moses Bassie lauded the ACC Team for engaging staff of NaCSA on key corruption issues and acknowledged the effects of graft on the development aspirations of the state. As a public service delivery institution, he said, management of NaCSA has always advised staff to maintain an uncompromising stance in service delivery and transparency and accountability.
ACC’s Senior Public Education Officer Junisa Sankoh whilst presenting on ethics in the workplace encouraged staff and management to be professional and maintain high ethical standards in performance of their duties. He spoke on code of conduct, integrity and professionalism in the performance of duties and encouraged that to uphold best practices. He advised them to be mindful of the presence of the ACC and existence of the scorpion squad in the region